The death of a loved one can be incredibly difficult to cope with. Some deaths that occur are classified as wrongful deaths. A wrongful death situation takes place when a person dies because of the other party being negligent, careless, or just intentionally causing harm. These deaths are often viewed as having been preventable if the individual had acted with reasonable oversight and care.
Before a court will file the defendant guilty of negligent behavior the plaintiff must prove that the defendant should have exercised duty of care for the person who died. For example, if a person ran a stop sign and caused a fatal car accident then as a driver he or she was required to obey the rules of the road and stop for oncoming traffic.
When the duty of care is breached, then the plaintiff must show that there are no additional causes that contributed to the death. For example, if a person died as a result of a fall at a business but there was a no trespassing sign posted then this could complicate matters even further. The burden of proof weighs on the shoulders of the plaintiff. This is why it is crucial to hire a lawyer that has experience with this type of litigation.
For example, if an individual assaults someone in the street and the individual hits his or her head on the pavement and dies as a result of a brain injury; then this could be sufficient cause to file a wrongful death case. Another example is if a business sells a defective product such as a toaster that catches fire and someone dies in that fire then the company could be held liable for the death.
A wrongful death attorney merrillville in can meet with you to go over the background of your case to see if filing a lawsuit is the right course of action to take. Because a death has taken place, many litigants can get emotional, so it is important to try to stick to the facts and focus on the goal of seeking a favorable outcome.
Wrongful death cases are civil cases. This means that the attorney will need to work to compile evidence that can establish the defendant’s legal liability in the lawsuit. This evidence typically includes the following: autopsy reports, medical records, police reports, eyewitness statements, etc.
According to Wikipedia, “some states make plaintiffs file wrongful death and survival claims separately. The wrongful death claim is based on the full value of the individual’s life. A survival claim is used to be compensated for punitive damages, the cost of the funeral, medical expenses and pain and suffering.”
When dealing with this type of legal issue, many plaintiffs prefer to try to push for a settlement to avoid dragging the proceedings out. This can save time and money. It is important to educate yourself with the help of a qualified attorney so that you can make the right choices for your case.